Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘WHFoods’

Zucchini Has Antioxidants and Vitamins

Posted by terrepruitt on June 23, 2012

I don’t think I really knew that the zucchini is a hybrid of the cucumber.  I do sometimes have trouble telling them apart when they are cut up in a salad, but I never really thought about their relation.  I guess I figured they were related somehow.  Since zucchini and cucumbers are related that makes zucchini a fruit.  Geez louise.  I would be in so much trouble if my life depended upon knowing the difference between what actually is a fruit and what isn’t.  Most of the vegetables I think of as vegetables are actually fruits.  The culinary world and the world of botany doesn’t always match up.  Wiki describes the zucchini in the following appetizing way:  “swollen ovary of the zucchini flower”.  Yeah thanks, I want to eat swollen ovaries. 🙂 I am mostly familiar with the green zucchini, however, it is called a summer squash.  I call yellow zucchini squash, not zucchini.

You might see recipes calling for courgettes . . . that is zucchini.

In regards to nutrition, zucchini are low in calories.  They are a great source of antioxidants.  In about 100 grams of zucchini there is 17 mg of vitamin C.    It seems the best way to get the most antioxidants out of the fruit is to steam them.  I am not sure I’ve tried them that way.  I like to roast them, but the time involved to get them the way I like them usually keeps me from making them that way.  As I mentioned in my Grated Zhuccini is GREAT post I actually like to grate them and mix them into other foods.  I think they go great with linguine and rice.  Not linquine and rice together, but one or the other.  A comment made on that post was asking if they are stringing when they are grated, but they are not, after it is cooked it has the consistency of cheese.  My last mix was turkey . . . . which is yummy too.  I also like them raw, sliced paper-thin, in green salads.

My mom makes them into cheese boats.  That’s a great way to cook them too.  Kind of like the eggplant I did, but she takes a little out from the middle and then puts cheese in them.  I only did that once.  That was really good.

Zucchini has a few of the B vitamins, as you can see below.

Also since the seeds contain Omega 3, zucchini might be one of those anti-inflammatory foods that can help with the inflammation of the body.  So many other foods (sugar, dairy, foods with transfat, refined grains) ADD to chronic inflammation it is always nice to get the foods into our diet that help combat it.  I say “might” because the information I read had said that studies have yet to prove . . . but if the seeds have Omega 3 the might help in the battle.

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According to WHFoods, 1 cup (113 grams) of raw zucchini contains:

vitamin C 32%

molybdenum 18%

vitamin B6 12.5%

manganese 10%

vitamin B2 9.4%

potassium 8.4%

folate 8.1%

fiber 4.9%

magnesium 4.8%

vitamin A 4.5%

phosphorus 4.2%

vitamin K 4.2%

vitamin B1 3.3%

tryptophan3.1%

copper 3%

vitamin B 32.7%

protein 2.7%

omega-3 fats 2.5%

Calories (18) 1%

Since is it summer time here and they call zucchini a summer squash, it’s a good time to post about it.  Especially since I received some in my organic produce box.

How do you prepare zucchini?  Which color do you use?  Which is your favorite?

Posted in Food, Vegetables | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

It’s Not the Turkey Making You Tired

Posted by terrepruitt on November 26, 2011

A while ago I heard something that explained the myth around turkey and tryptophan.  But I couldn’t remember what it was so I was thinking about it and I realized that it probably isn’t really the amount of tryptophan in the turkey that causes people to get sleepy it is more likely the combination of foods that are being consumed during a holiday meal AND the amount.  I was thinking that all the carbohydrates would be a reason that people feel sleepy after eating a turkey dinner.  So, of course I looked it up and the wonderful Wiki had a lot of great info.

First of all, the amount of tryptophan is less in turkey than in cod, soybeans, Parmesan cheese, and cheddar cheese.  It is slightly higher in turkey than chicken, beef, and pork chops.  A direct quote from Wiki:  “It is particularly plentiful in chocolate, oats, dried dates, milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, red meat, eggs, fish, poultry, sesame, chickpeas, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, corn, spirulina, and peanuts.”  Basically protein based foods. Tryptohphan in turkey has been blamed for many people falling asleep after a Holiday meal.

Tryptophan is an essential amino acid so that means we must eat it because our bodies cannot produce it.  If you are experiencing depression, anxiety, irritability, impatience, impulsiveness, inability to concentrate, weight gain or unexplained weight loss, overeating and/or carbohydrate cravings, poor dream recall, or insomnia, according to WHFoods, you could need to add more tryptophan to your diet.  Adding more foods that contain high amounts of tryptophan could possibly help you with these things.  It helps form serotonin which can help you feel better and help you sleep.

The ByteSize Science did a little video explaining that tryptophan does not make you sleepy.  This video says there is LESS in turkey than in chicken.  It explains that tryptophan on its own could cause you to be sleepy, but the amount in turkey has to compete with all the other food and so it is not enough to actually cause you to be tired.  This video also says that most people eat more calories in one Thanksgiving meal than they normally it in a regular day.  This huge amount of food makes the body have to work extra hard to digest the food.  The blood goes from the brain to the stomach which causes the tiredness and grogginess.

Not sure how the turkey-tryptophan myth started, but science has proved it to be exactly that – a myth.  So instead of blaming turkey, and the amino acid that our body needs to make necessary compounds, for our post Holiday food coma we should actually acknowledge it is probably the amount of food and the combination of food that is responsible.  Armed with this information we could eat our turkey without fearing it will cause us to get sleepy and maybe eat less food and less carbs and avoid the food coma that usually ensues a Holiday meal.   What do you think?

This is a portion of a chart on Wiki:

Food Protein [g/100 g of food] Tryptophan
[g/100 g of food]
Tryptophan/Protein [%]
cod, atlantic, dried

62.82

0.70

1.11

soybeans, raw

36.49

0.59

1.62

cheese, Parmesan

37.90

0.56

1.47

cheese, cheddar

24.90

0.32

1.29

pork, chop

19.27

0.25

1.27

turkey

21.89

0.24

1.11

chicken

20.85

0.24

1.14

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Beans

Posted by terrepruitt on July 22, 2010

Beans are so good for you.  I don’t like beans.  Well, I like green beans.  I like hummus.  I can sometimes tolerate garbanzo beans in a green salad, but if there are too many, I push them off to the side.  I don’t like legumes.

According to all the information I have seen in my fact finding mission for this post:  beans help lower “bad cholesterol” by helping it out of the body.  Beans have an excellent amount of fiber (really excellent amount fiber).  Beans have a lot of protein.  The ratio of fat to proteis is awesome.  These are some of the reasons I think I need to learn like beans.

Let’s look at two examples the kidney bean and the garbanzo bean (also known as chickpeas)

Kidney beans – 1 cup has

Calories: 225
Protein: 15.3g
Carbohydrate: 40.4g
Total Fat: 0.88g
Fiber: 11.3g
Iron: 5.2 mg
Magnesium: 80 my
Folate:  229 mcg*

Garbanzo beans (canned), 1 cup has

Calories: 286
Protein: 11.8g
Carbohydrate: 54.3g
Total Fat: 2.7g
Fiber: 10.5g
Folate: 160 mcg
Vitamin B6: 1.13 mg
Vitamin C: 9 mg
Zinc: 2.54 mg*

My next post (Saturday) I will share a Bean Salad recipe.  Come back and check it out!

*Source:  Truthstar Health website

Some additional info at: WHFoods Kidney  and  WHFoods Garbanzo

 

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , | 8 Comments »